Category Archives: Education

To Sing or Not to Sing in Church, That is the Question for the Gilroy High School Choir

4efb31eb4f085.imageChoir practice in a church makes sense, unless it is the Gilroy High School choir, which was told it was no longer allowed to utilize church buildings for practices or performances as mandated by the Superintendent, according to Jeremy Tedesco of Alliance Defending Freedom.

Senior Legal Counsel, Jeremy Tedesco, disagrees, “Gilroy Unified School District is wrong to end its longstanding tradition of allowing choir groups to perform in acoustically superior churches, hurting both the musicians and the local community. The choirs are not performing in the churches for any religious reason.”

Gilroy High School choirs have been performing for years in acoustically superior facilities, ranging from a variety of church buildings,  to the South Valley National Bank and the Elks club, to showcase their exceptional talent in the best facilities. The district is updating their facilities and talking to acoustic experts to make their own facilities a better place for the choir to practice, according to Jaime Rosso, Board President of Gilroy Unified School District. The board says it desires the students to use the facilities that are available in the school district.

Yet in the mean time, the choirs miss out on great sounding venues due to a few misguided complaints, and a Superintendent who does not understand the Establishment Clause. In a letter written by Jeremy Tedseco to the School board, he states that the nature of choosing a variety of neutral venues, based on the excellent acoustics upholds the Establishment Clause, and by denying the choir access to these venues, the School District may very  well be violating it.

Rosenberger, 515 U.S. at 839 ( “[A] significant factor in upholding governmental programs in the face of Establishment Clause attack is their neutrality towards religioñ’); see also Gaod News Club, 633 U.S. at 114 (“For the `guarantee of neutrality is respected, not offended, when the government, following neutral criteria and evenhanded policies, e~ttende benefits to'” religious and secular beneficiaries alike).

The board is re-evaluating their decision according to Central Coast News and will allow the choirs to practice in whatever facility they desire until the school buildings are renovated and the acoustics meet a higher standard.

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A Conversation About Home Schooling

Sixteen years of my life, thus far, have been dedicated to the education of my children.  I have home schooled all four and can proudly say, that it continues to pay in eternal dividends.  My first graduate is now a junior at Biola University studying journalism and effectively navigating the world of higher education.  My younger three are in high school and junior high, and they get to expand their home schooling horizons through the Biola STAR Academics program, where they take core classes, while enjoying the benefit found only in home schooling.  It has been a road less traveled and many times exhausting, but it has been worth all the late night preparations of essays and tears of “just not getting it” when faced with an algebraic equation.  The dividends that are gained through the diligent side by side work with my children, not just in their academic life, but as a family are priceless and something that could not be recreated if an institution had my children for 8 to 10 hours a day.  It is the best school choice we as a family ever made.

My co-worker at STAR Academics and I were discussing the following parent-teacher conference film in light of education in general. Having home schooled for so long and having been actively involved with the teaching of other home schooled students, I have found that most home schooling families have counted the cost of sending their children to the local assembly line of education and have made the choice to swim against the status quo. Those who come from the public schools, are usually shocked by the vigorous program we offer two days a week at STAR Academics, and the time and dedication that is demanded of the parents themselves. There is also the surprise that the “A” easily gained at the public school may not be as easily achieved in our home schooling program. The kinds of conversations that many times take place are, “How come Jimmy is not excelling like he was at his old high school? Why is he only getting a “B-“, when he used to get all “A”s in his A.P. classes?” To this type of question, my site administrator explains that, colleges will ultimately look at the scores of SAT or ACT tests as these compare apples to apples, and that different grading standards of the various schools in the valley, be it private, public or home schooling will be measured in that standardized test.

She gave the example of a school that takes remedial students, just trying to prepare them for the California High School Exit Exam, who end up getting “A”s as seniors while passing an eighth grade level math course. Their GPA may look good, but the comparison of strenuous academic criteria and standards found at the neighboring Christian school makes the “A” student from the remdial school not even compare to a “B” student at the private school. Therefore a standardized test for universities to weigh the student’s academic aptitude is necessary.

The goal of most home schooling families I have been privileged to work with goes deeper than just academics and involves the educating and nurturing of the whole child: body, soul and spirit. Because the parent is the teacher, he or she recognizes the areas of strength and weakness in the individual student and can make adjustments to meet those needs. Remaining diligent to the call, finding outside help when needed and realizing that the goal should be to instill a love of learning, will help when the daily grind gets rough.

Whether one chooses Private, Charter, Public or Home Schooling for their children, ultimately the training of the child rests solely on the parents and their involvement in the process. One can not enter a parent teacher conference and place all the blame on the teacher, as the closest teacher a child will ever have is the parent. Too many times, the following video, is the scene in a parent teacher conference. Watch and learn how not to be like this mother portrayed in this telling scenario.


National School Choice Week: What’s My Role?

A full house, at the Nixon Library,  greeted nationally syndicated talk show host Hugh Hewitt and Dick Morris, author and political commentator, jointly hosting an evening dedicated to School Choice Week.  The Education Revolution Tour:  Restoring America’s Pride is touring America to offer a bright hope for the future of America’s kids.

We should be leading the world in education, yet our 15-year-olds rank 35th out of 57 countries in literacy and math; we are behind most industrial nations!

According to the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) involving a half-million students in 41 countries,  U.S. fourth-graders are performing poorly, middle school students worse, and high school students are unable to compete. By the same criteria used to say we were “average” in elementary school, “we appear to be “near the bottom” at the high school level.”

What is school choice?  Dick Morris answered saying that a “revolution is happening this year in the United States.”  He shared that only 15% of American kids attend Private or Parochial schools and “the rest go to the only remnant of socialism in the United States = Public School.  This is the only area in a parent’s life that they don’t have a choice.”

In 1990, per student spending was $7,300  and today, $10,000: resulting in 0% improvement in reading and 4/10% in math.  More money has not improved our students, but it has paid for more bureaucracy and teacher’ unions who push for teacher tenure and seniority pay.

“We have to let the kids, who are trapped (in bad schools), find a way to excellency,” said Hewitt. “School choice isn’t just a tool, it is a higher calling.  Academic performance of students to other kids internationally is down because we gave up on doing difficult things. There is too little return for the hard work.”

“One size doesn’t fit all.  Kids are unique and should have the option to find a school that fits their needs.  If we empower the parents, we will reform education,” stated Morris.

So what is the answer? School Choice.

“Our message is simple: we need a K-12 education system that provides a wide array of options. We need an effective education system that has the flexibility to personalize and motivate students and allow parents to choose the school that is best for their child.”  National School Choice Week

Not all schools are in bad shape and do in fact produce quality students exceptionally educated, but this is the exception. Most are following in the footsteps of Detroit, “where a report from the Detroit News Monday suggested that without government aid, the city of Detroit will be forced to close down nearly half of the city’s public schools in the next two years. Additionally, the paper warns that average high school class sizes will swell to 62 students by the following year.”

Detroit is an example of what ultimately happens when teacher pensions and union contracts continue to grow as the economy slumps.  The students and the community suffer when learning comes to a stand still at the hand of unions and bureaucrats.

This is a-political, it is about American children everywhere, who need an exceptional education and deserve to have the best schooling  provided in the greatest nation on earth.  We can do this and we must demand that it gets done. Choice is the answer through vouchers, tax credits and scholarships; as well as providing creative educational experiences utilizing virtual learning, specialized schools with paths to various vocations and careers and outcome based standards so the tax dollars won’t be wasted.  Charter schools, home schools, private and public should all play a unique part in the educational landscape of America.

Get involved.  Become active as School Choice advocate.  Attend an event and hear the exciting ways  schools will see the light at the end of this dark age, in 2011.

“The modern issue of school integration is school choice,” Morris said.  It is THAT important.


Home Schooling Takes Perseverance

Home schooling is not for the faint of heart, though I have felt like fainting these past few weeks. One would think after successfully graduating a child, the next one would be easier. Yet, each student has challenges and talents that make for a brand new set of learning styles for me, the teacher! The beauty of home schooling is that the parent, a.k.a.: the teacher, becomes the student all over again and re-learns or at least attempts to re-learn all the things that were supposed to be understood in high school!

The past few weeks have been the final stretch of semester one. Geometry has hit points of long moments of struggle and tears when a proof just isn’t proving to be understandable! Student and teacher tears mingle together and an email to the tutor helps resolve the confusion, temporarily, but the pressure mounts as a mid-term looms next week.

The term paper that took two days of My weekend, may not get an award for most persuasive, but there is certainly a sense of accomplishment and pride, and of course I am talking about my daughter, not my own feelings of finishing strong.

The book, That Hideous Strength, was read and precised on Thursday this past week. It, or should I say, my daughter, kept us awake, me as official editor, until 2:30 a.m. Thursday morning. The word count never seemed to go down substantially. With each read through and deletion of un-necessary phrases, we finally chopped the paper down enough to reached the prescribed one thousand words. The clock on the wall kept reminding me that I wanted to be in bed. I began to feel like I was the one who had read That Hideous Strength and not my daughter.  And as if that was not enough, a mid-night geometry test and biology homework was also completed.

Again I say, home schooling is not for the faint at heart. I know one must be asking, why in heaven’s name, is the schooling happening in the middle of the night? Let me explain, no sum up. We are part of a wonderful program called Biola STAR Academics and Torrey Academy, to help me help my kids, get all they need academically, so they will excel in college. My oldest, my first graduate, is indeed living up to my prayers and expectations as a student of Biola University.  She is a journalism major, with plans to do a study abroad next semester in Washington D.C.  She is a writer for the The Chimes, the University newspaper, and her success at Biola has shown me that this home schooling choice has indeed been the correct one. So as we struggle through tenth grade again, (and I wouldn’t use the word struggle usually, it has just been a long week), I count my blessing for the right to school my kids at home. I thank God for programs like Torrey Academy and STAR that help me, help my children get a high caliber academic education that prepares them for life and college.

I will be completing high school two more times and I am sure I will be much smarter when I graduate my last student. But I will be saddened that the days of whining and roses will be complete. I love to school my kids. I love the fact that this Country allows parents the right to school in this manner. I am grateful that I have my fingers in the mix and that I can see their accomplishments first hand and watch the struggles create in them a perseverance that will last a life time. I have always compared home schooling to watching one’s child take their first step or say their first word. There is so much joy and anticipation in those events and with home schooling, I get to see my child read his first word, figure out his first Algebra problem and most importantly, I get to be the one who trains them up in the admonition of the Lord and watch Him transform them into His image. Truly a most enviable task in life.  And by the way, I get to re-do high school four times! Isn’t that the American dream: to go back to high school?


Obama 101

school house

I remember being taught as a little girl to love the Lord God and serve Him only.  I remember standing with my fellow classmates each morning, hand over my heart, saying with respect for each word, “I pledge Allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.”  I remember being taught in school to honor and respect the office of the President, a position that has been gilded by such noble men as George Washington, James Madison and Abraham Lincoln.  I remember walking to the polling place each election year and somehow knowing even as a child the significance of casting a vote.  I remember  having the privilege in second grade of signing a “Declaration of Independence” in honor of our nation’s two hundredth birthday and sending it from the west coast to the east in a covered wagon.  But what I don’t remember is a political agenda of a President and an indoctrination coming from Washington D.C. to affect my mind as a young child.

School was a place of learning and ideas; it was a place where teachers inspired this learning and where friendships lasted.  School was about the recess games and spelling all the states’ names correctly.  The teachers cared about the child’s academic progress and  growth with the objective: to teach  him to grow in wisdom, stature and favor with God and man.

How then, if this is what school was, do we find ourselves pledging not to the flag, but to an ideology carried on the authority of the President.  No time in the history of the United States has a President infiltrated the halls of learning in such a manner.  Is it historic?  Perhaps.  Is it right?  I think not.

First ladies have visited schools for the cause of education. Campaigning politicians have visited the classrooms of their precincts to meet and greet teachers and parents. However, to have the standing President become the cheer leader of an ideological cause which demands a pledge of service from children who have no voice in the political spectrum is insidious.  Obama however demonstrates his genius through this agenda to take this captive audience of young impressionable children and infiltrate their impressionable minds.  His marketing techniques for his “Change” and “Hope” campaign are brilliant yet beyond the pale.   “Education is a weapon whose effects depend on who holds it in his hands and at whom it is aimed” and thus Obama enters the classroom.

obama-classroom

Some may argue that the children of America are getting the pleasure of having the President of the United States speak in their classrooms and perhaps this would be true if there was not a blatant agenda presupposing the visit.  This is  a campaign for the hearts and minds of our children, a segment of society that should be left out of the political fray and allowed to be nurtured by their parents; schooled in reading, writing and arithmetic and not used as pawns in this Administrations’ plans for its future.

When Barack Obama took office, he swore to the American people these words: “I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitutions of the United States.”  This is the same oath which every President has solemnly promised to the people he has served.  Yet this forty-fourth president has forgotten that though he sits in the most powerful seat in the world, he came to this position by only 53% of the people’s votes, yet when he took this oath of office it was as President to 100% of America.  Barrack Obama is our public servant who works for the United States of America in the capacity of chief executive.  His paycheck is signed by the American people and as our employee; he should be listening to those for whom he works instead of indoctrinating America’s children.

This Tuesday, “We the Parents” must take a strong stand for our children. We must send a message to our government that they work for us, that the liberal agenda does not belong in the classroom and that the President needs to stay in the Oval office and do the work of a President.  If our government uses sanctions to put pressure on others countries that are out of line, then we, the parents should sanction our government by keeping our children home on Tuesday and therefore send a message that affects the pocket book of each district that refuses to listen to its clientele. The government, in its many forms, works for us and when that government is not working well for us, we fire it.  The Administration dismisses the voice of the people, as “astroturf” and  “Right Wing Domestic Terrorists” and as such, we must continue to turn up the our democratic heat, live out loud our First Amendment rights and protect the future of America, our children.


A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste

ExplorePAHistory-a0a7r8-a_349

The little girl’s shoulders shook as she tearfully hugged her big brother good bye.  The mother stood by with her hand on her son’s shoulder, painfully dealing with the transition from high school student to college freshman.  The scene was touching and brought back personal memories of just a year ago as I too experienced this emotional release in 2008 when my daughter entered the university for the first time. Yet there was peace knowing that the college she was attending was built on this mission statement:  “Biblically centered education, scholarship and service- equipping men and women in mind and character to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.”

The first institution in America was founded in 1636 by a Puritan named John Harvard.  He left his library of 400 books to found a “seminary” with this understanding, “The maine end of [a student’s] life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all found knowledge and learning.” (Samuel, Eliot Morison, The Founding of Harvard College).  Today the mission statement for Harvard is vastly different.  “In brief: Harvard strives to create knowledge, to open the minds of students to that knowledge, and to enable students to take best advantage of their educational opportunities.” Harvard no longer espouses that the study of God and Jesus Christ is the foundation of all found knowledge and learning, but rather there is a denial of God and the belief that humans can create knowledge.  Education has devolved from its superior beginnings in America when the Progressive agenda took root, walking away from the classical preparation that made the true pursuit of knowledge and truth foundational and moving toward an education of experience, resulting in an incremental “dumbing down” of Americans dating back to the early twentieth century.

Parents today may send their children off to prestigious learning institution, feeling secure in the campus security, the dorm life, and the extra-curricular activities these schools may offer, but because parent’s have also been indoctrinated into a Progressive mentality, it doesn’t occur to them to be wary of the propaganda taught at most universities.  Glenn Beck points out in Common Sense that the educational system has “fallen prey to political patronage and the Progressive agenda.”  Beck also quoted Woodrow Wilson, once president of Princeton University, (another one of America’s first colleges founded to meet the needs of training ministers) who said, “Our problem is not merely to help the students to adjust themselves to world life….[but]to make them as unlike their fathers as we can.”  Beck, Glenn Common Sense, Pg 91.

When did the fathers of our country become unworthy of study and emulation?  Who should we fashioning our lives after, if it is not the great men and women in history, our American history?  Who should children view as worthwhile role models if it is not their fathers? When did the colleges and universities become enemies of the parent instead of a support system to help the child to succeed in becoming an adult?

view of harvard college

According to Gary Amos and Richard Gardiner in their book Never Before in History, the standard for graduation in the 1700s from Harvard was as follows:

17. Every student who, on trial, shall be able to translate from the original Latin text, and logically to explain the Holy Scriptures, both of the Old and New Testament, and shall also be thoroughly acquainted with the principles of natural and moral philosophy, and shall be blameless in life and character, and approved at public examination by the President and the Fellows of the College, may receive the first degree.

The Masters Degree required the following:

18. Every scholar who has maintained a good standing, and exhibited a written synopsis of logic, natural and moral philosophy, arithmetic and astronomy, and shall be prepared to defend a proposition or thesis; shall also be versed in the original languages, as aforesaid; and who carries with him a reputation for upright character and diligence in study, and shall pass successfully a public examination, shall be admitted to the second, or Master’s degree.

Today according to the Harvard website, graduation requirements to earn the bachelor’s degree, a student must complete 128 credits and maintain good academic standing (2.0 GPA). At least 64 credits must be completed at Harvard University. A student must fulfill all of his or her requirements and be in good academic and financial standing with Harvard University, with no disciplinary or administrative procedures pending, to graduate and participate in May Commencement. Each school of study of course has differing requirements for its emphasis, but it is interesting to note the very different tone that one finds today at one of America’s most renowned universities and the requirements of two hundred years ago.

Most interesting is the requirement that the student must be upright and blameless in life and character and having a thorough knowledge of the Bible in the 1700’s Laws and Statutes for Students of Harvard College. One would be hard pressed to find such a high standard for graduation from any school today, let alone America’s oldest institution of higher learning: Harvard University. Academic standards are set without regard for the character of the individual and no where is the Bible seen as an indispensable factor for a well rounded scholar.

new england primer page

Our lower institutions of learning have an even tougher climb to reach the excellence of early American schools. The New England Primer was the text book that emphasized both Christian character and literacy and classical education was a standard for many colonial Americans, along with apprenticeships to provide skilled training.

Today’s classrooms would not be allowed to have a New England Primer, as it would offend those who believe in the separation of church and state. The Primer utilized Bible stories to help teach the alphabet and the Westminster Catechism was also part of the text. Samuel Eliot Morison said, “American revolutionary leaders, both North and South, Madison, Wythe, and Jefferson, the Rutledges and Pinckneys, as well as Hamilton, Jay, and the Adamses, and Trumbulls, could never have rendered their distinguished services to the young republic without that classical leaning which is denied to most Americans today. (Samuel Eliot Morison, Three Centuries of Harvard (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1936), 136.

How do we expect our children to excel in grade school, middle school and high school when the standards of education are at an all time low? When Progressivism has a choke hold on real education, when indoctrination is the ring of the school bell, and the diploma of good citizenship is given to a student who can spew out the correct responses on a test that measures the ability to think green, distrust the government and treat people equally. We are not raising an army of brilliant thinkers as the founding fathers were, but rather a generation whose work ethic, morality and character are easy to mold by those who believe they know what is best. Yet this “knowing” leadership also attended the schools of Progressive instruction and they too are not in the same league as the excellent scholars, thinkers and statesmen that the Founders were.

Teaching_Cert._Cartoon

How can we as parents pursue an education for our children, that reflects excellence and strives for a standard that few achieve, a standard that early Americans set and achieved? We as parents do know what is best for our children, even in regard to education, though the local school district and the Obama Administration would say the contrary. American schools are failing our children not because students are not learning to read, write and do basic math, but because the standard of excellence, the standard of “blameless in life and character” is not the key element in a child’s life. When we take away the foundation of Biblical scholarship and morality and replace it with an ever changing ideology of humanism, then the goal becomes only to clone robots who espouse the philosophy of the powers that be. When high moral character and biblical ethics are separated from the education of a child, only the outer shell will appear polished. Test scores may reflect understanding and in academics that child may find success, but the inner person will struggle for meaning that was never addressed in this pursuit of knowledge.

A wholly educated person is educated in mind, body and spirit and is a danger to the Progressive agenda, because that person has the ability to reason, to consider ethical ramifications and to speak against the wrongs that the government is foisting on the “tired and huddled masses”. This is why education is the most crucial weapon that we have as parents and that the Progressive desire to hold in complete control. There is recognition that if the masses can be educated just enough to know how to follow their “teachers”, then an army of “yes men” can be established. This is why parents must do their due diligence to be connected with their child through every part of schooling, even the choosing of the university. This too should becomes a family affair as the family releases the life, mind, and spirit of their child to an institution that will either reinforce the values of the family unit and build it into a stronger entity, or will do the work of a cancer and slowly destroy the value system of that individual, creating in that student an individual who questions the loving authority that nurtured it and instilling a group think mentality focused on experience and skills needed for a future society.

The future of America is in the children that we raise. Mediocre is not an option. Parents must become more deeply engaged in the philosophy of the educational process, as well as breaking the chains that have imprisoned our minds as well. We must re-educate ourselves, recognizing that we all have had a dose of Progressive indoctrination, and we must return to the educational pattern that helped establish this nation. Those who rule on high in Washington are products of this century old heist of the American mind. Like the old proverb, they too have been the frog, slowing dying in an ever warming pot of water. But the fire can be extinguished and the death of brilliant minds stopped. It is not too late to stop the march of this Statist ideology but it must become personal and we must return to the pursuit of truth that Harvard was built on at its inception: “The maine end of [a student’s] life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all found knowledge and learning.” Without this foundation, we may truly say, the mind is a terrible thing to waste.


The little girl’s shoulders shook as she tearfully hugged her big brother good bye. The mother stood by with her hand on her son’s shoulder, painfully dealing with the transition from high school student to college freshman. The scene was touching and brought back personal memories of just a year ago as I too experienced this emotional release in 2008 when my daughter entered the university for the first time. Yet there was peace knowing that the college she was attending was built on this mission statement: “Biblically centered education, scholarship and service- equipping men and women in mind and character to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.”

The first institution in America was founded in 1636 by a Puritan named John Harvard. He left his library of 400 books to found a “seminary” with this understanding, “The maine end of [a student’s] life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all found knowledge and learning.” (Samuel, Eliot Morison, The Founding of Harvard College). Today the mission statement for Harvard is vastly different. “In brief: Harvard strives to create knowledge, to open the minds of students to that knowledge, and to enable students to take best advantage of their educational opportunities.” Harvard no longer espouses that the study of God and Jesus Christ is the foundation of all found knowledge and learning, but rather there is a denial of God and the belief that humans can create knowledge. Education has devolved from its superior beginnings in America when the Progressive agenda took root, walking away from the classical preparation that made the true pursuit of knowledge and truth foundational and moving toward an education of experience, resulting in an incremental “dumbing down” of Americans dating back to the early twentieth century.

Parents today may send their children off to prestigious learning institution, feeling secure in the campus security, the dorm life, and the extra-curricular activities these schools may offer, but because parent’s have also been indoctrinated into a Progressive mentality, it doesn’t occur to them to be wary of the propaganda taught at most universities. Glenn Beck points out in Common Sense that the educational system has “fallen prey to political patronage and the Progressive agenda.” Beck also quoted Woodrow Wilson, once president of Princeton University, (another one of America’s first colleges founded to meet the needs of training ministers) who said, “Our problem is not merely to help the students to adjust themselves to world life….[but]to make them as unlike their fathers as we can.” Beck, Glenn Common Sense, Pg 91.

When did the fathers of our country become unworthy of study and emulation? Who should we fashioning our lives after, if it is not the great men and women in history, our American history? Who should children view as worthwhile role models if it is not their fathers? When did the colleges and universities become enemies of the parent instead of a support system to help the child to succeed in becoming an adult?

According to Gary Amos and Richard Gardiner, in their book Never Before in History, the standard for graduation in the 1700s from Harvard was as follows:

  • Every student who, on trial, shall be able to translate from the original Latin text, and logically to explain the Holy Scriptures, both of the Old and New Testament, and shall also be thoroughly acquainted with the principles of natural and moral philosophy, and shall be blameless in life and character, and approved at public examination by the President and the Fellows of the College, may receive the first degree.

The Masters Degree required the following:

  • Every scholar who has maintained a good standing, and exhibited a written synopsis of logic, natural and moral philosophy, arithmetic and astronomy, and shall be prepared to defend a proposition or thesis; shall also be versed in the original languages, as aforesaid; and who carries with him a reputation for upright character and diligence in study, and shall pass successfully a public examination, shall be admitted to the second, or Master’s degree.

Today according to the Harvard website, graduation requirements to earn the bachelor’s degree, a student must complete 128 credits and maintain good academic standing (2.0 GPA). At least 64 credits must be completed at Harvard University. A student must fulfill all of his or her requirements and be in good academic and financial standing with Harvard University, with no disciplinary or administrative procedures pending, to graduate and participate in May Commencement. Each school of study of course has differing requirements for its emphasis,

but it is interesting to note the very different tone that one finds today at one of America’s most renowned universities and the requirements of two hundred years ago.

Most interesting is the requirement that the student must be upright and blameless in life and character and having a thorough knowledge of the Bible in the 1700’s Laws and Statutes for Students of Harvard College. One would be hard pressed to find such a high standard for graduation from any school today, let alone America’s oldest institution of higher learning: Harvard University.

Academic standards are set without regard for the character of the individual and no where is the Bible seen as an indispensable factor for a well rounded scholar.


Our lower institutions of learning have an even tougher climb to reach the excellence of early American schools. The New England Primer was the text book that emphasized both Christian charact

er and literacy and classical education was a standard for many colonial Americans, along with apprenticeships to provide skilled training.

Today’s classrooms would not be allowed to have a New E

ngland Primer, as it would offend those who believe in the separation of church and state. The Primer utilized Bible stories to help teach the alphabet and the Westminster Catechism was also part of the text. Samuel Eliot Morison said, “American revolutionary leaders, both North and South, Madison, Wythe, and Jefferson, the Rutledges and Pinckneys, as well as Hamilton, Jay, and the Adamses, and Trumbulls, could never have rendered their distinguished services to the young republic without that classical leaning which is denied to most Americans today. (Samuel Eliot Morison, Three Centuries of Harvard (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1936), 136.

How do we expect our children to excel in grade school, middle school and high school when the standards of education are at an all time low? When Progressivism has a choke hold on real education, when indoctrination is the ring of the school bell, and the diploma of good citizenship is given to a student who can spew out the correct responses on a test that measures the ability to think green, distrust the government and treat people equally. We are not raising an army of brilliant thinkers as the founding fathers were, but rather a generation whose work ethic, morality and character are easy to mold by those who believe they know what is best. Yet this “knowing” leadership also attended the schools of Progressive instruction and they too are not in the same league as the excellent scholars, thinkers and statesmen that the Founders were.

How can we as parents pursue an education for our children, that reflects excellence and strives for a standard that few achieve, a standard that early Americans set and achieved? We as parents do know what is best for our children, even in regard to education, though the local school district and the Obama Administration would say the contrary. American schools are failing our children not because students are not learning to read, write and do basic math, but because the standard of excellence, the standard of “blameless in life and character” is not the key element in a child’s life. When we take away the foundation of Biblical scholarship and morality and replace it with an ever changing ideology of humanism, then the goal becomes only to clone robots who espouse the philosophy of the powers that be. When high moral character and biblical ethics are separated from the education of a child, only the outer shell will appear polished. Test scores may reflect understanding and in academics that child may find success, but the inner person will struggle for meaning that was never addressed in this pursuit of knowledge.

A wholly educated person is educated in mind, body and spirit and is a danger to the Progressive agenda, because that person has the ability to reason, to consider ethical ramifications and to speak against the wrongs that the government is foisting on the “tired and huddled masses”. This is why education is the most crucial weapon that we have as parents and that the Progressive desire to hold in complete control. There is recognition that if the masses can be educated just enough to know how to follow their “teachers”, then an army of “yes men” can be established. This is why parents must do their due diligence to be connected with their child through every part of schooling, even the choosing of the university. This too should becomes a family affair as the family releases the life, mind, and spirit of their child to an institution that will either reinforce the values of the family unit and build it into a stronger entity, or will do the work of a cancer and slowly destroy the value system of that individual, creating in that student an individual who questions the loving authority that nurtured it and instilling a group think mentality focused on experience and skills needed for a future society.


The future of America is in the children that we raise. Mediocre is not an option. Parents must become more deeply engaged in the philosophy of the educational process, as well as breaking the chains that have imprisoned our minds as well. We must re-educate ourselves, recognizing that we all have had a dose of Progressive indoctrination, and we must return to the educational pattern that helped establish this nation. Those who rule on high in Washington are products of this century old heist of the American mind. Like the old proverb, they too have been the frog, slowing dying in an ever warming pot of water. But the fire can be extinguished and the death of brilliant minds stopped. It is not too late to stop the march of this Statist ideology but it must become personal and we must return to the pursuit of truth that Harvard was built on at its inception: “The maine end of [a student’s] life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all found knowledge and learning.” Without this foundation, we may truly say, the mind is a terrible thing to waste.